According to new research from Havas Media, a whopping 55% of people have a natural distrust for brands — and this number is further increasing.

What do you do when a good percentage of your target audience do not naturally trust you?

No, you don't send out more emails about how great your services are.

You work on your PR game.

Unfortunately however, most brands do not understand how PR works and, as a result, keep breaking written and unwritten rules.

If you want to get results from your PR efforts in 2017, it is absolutely essential to avoid the following mistakes — most of these are based on research, and paying attention will surely yield positive results:

Not Having a PR Strategy: Ask most people what they are doing about their PR, and the majority will say things like, “I monitor social media for user comments” or “I reach out to publications to ask them to cover my business.” While these are all fairly good actions, very few people actually do what matters most: have a PR strategy. In fact, statistics show that just 19% of PR/communications people are involved when companies plan their marketing strategy. (A lot of this is down to the senior management team rather than the PR professional, too).

Not having a PR strategy is recipe for disaster — especially in 2017. It is essential to have a PR strategy that outlines your goals, tasks, execution style and what to do in case of a crisis.

Not Having a Share-Worthy Story:Journalists are inundated with queries from companies that want to be covered, and increasingly so. In a world where journalists are busy and overwhelmed with requests to cover different businesses, how do you stand out? By having a shareworthy story! In fact, research by Edelman found that 76% of journalists feel pressured to think about how shareworthy a story is before covering it.

Not having a shareworthy story can kill your PR efforts in 2017. (If you need to know more about making your story share worthy, call me for a chat on 07979245670)

Taking an Impersonal Approach to Outreach: Automation is good, but — depending on how you do it — it can actually harm your PR instead of help it. Many people do outreach by adding journalists and influencers to an email list and sending them bulk emails. An ineffective approach.

Many journalists will ignore you if you don’t personalize your email to them. Simply doing research and addressing journalists by name can go a long way to boost responses to your emails, and research has shown that simply personalising your emails can increase responses by up to 303 percent.

Not Blogging: When many people think PR, they instantly think about everything except blogging. However, joking with blogging in 2017 will be a serious PR mistake. In fact, research already shows that blogs are the fifty most trusted source of accurate information online. Your blog is one of the few channels that you actually truly control. It allows you to have a voice and keep your users in the loop of what is really happening. Also, starting a blog isn’t complicated, Impress PR could get you set up with one in

Ignoring the KIS Principle: Keep it Simple. That’s one principle you shouldn’t ignore in 2017. If you do it, you do so at your peril. Research shows that we now have a shorter attention span than a goldfish (I'm not kidding), and that our attention span declines at a rapid pace every year. 

According to a Greentarget study, 70 percent of journalists spend no more than one minute on every email they open — so you have just one minute to get the attention of most journalists. Anything that requires them to spend more than one minute on your emails is pretty much a waste of effort.

Ignoring Your Email Game: Do you know how many emails are sent every second? A whopping 2.5 million emails. And journalists get significantly more emails than the average person. As a result, subject lines can be the most important factor that determines whether a whopping 79 percent of journalists will open your email or not.

Sophie Attwood - ImpressPR

Sophie Attwood